US start-up Kestrel Aircraft has returned to NBAA with a mock up of its Kestrel single-engined turboprop and is keen to stress it is business as usual for the programme while it continues to search for funding to complete development.

The Superior, Wisconsin-headquarted company - launched in 2010 by Cirrus Aircraft co-founder Alan Klapmeier - is looking worldwide for investors, but declines to disclose who it is targeting or whether it is presently in discussions with any parties.

"We are continuing to work towards certification on a low-key basis," says Kestrel chief operating officer Steve Sterling. The programme is currently being supported by a mixture of private and US government funding.

"The Kestrel's design configuration is frozen and our engineering and design teams are testing and working on uses for the the composite materials. We've also done a lot of work with the FAA already," Sterling says.

"The next step is to build the first flight test aircraft - C-1. That's what we need the money for," he adds. The initial aircraft will be used for aerodynamics testing, while two further prototypes will perform systems and function and reliability testing respectively.

The Kestrel will be powered by the Honeywell TPE331-14 - the first installation for the powerplant on a single-engined aircraft - will and feature the Garmin G3000 flightdeck in the cockpit. "We shan't take any orders until the funding is in place and we have pinned down the certification timetable," says Sterling.

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Source: Flight Daily News